Council, DGI Form Committee to Evaluate Organization's Effectiveness

11:59 PM, Feb 28, 2013   |    comments
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Greensboro, NC - The city of Greensboro funds a majority of Downtown Greensboro Incorporated's annual budget.

For the 2012-2013 year, Greensboro taxpayers are handing over more than $900,000.

Last week, their effectiveness and role was criticized by the Greensboro City Council and this week, the two entities have formed a committee to evaluate to organization and determine future goals.

"Its to make sure everyone is getting a good return on their investment and what can we do to promote the entire downtown Greensboro in a better way," explained Councilman Zack Matheny.

The city's current investment goes towards beautifying downtown.

DGI is responsible for the hanging flower baskets and for cleaning the streets. They've picked up more 100 tons of trash in downtown.

They also are responsible for marketing downtown.

They operate a website that promotes Center City and help organize events like the Fun Forth Festival and First Fridays.

WFMY News 2's Morgan Hightower asked Councilman Matheny if that was worth nearly one-million dollars.

"That's a good question and that is what we are trying to figure out. I mean that is why council is saying what can we get for one million dollars and oh by the way, what if we put another million into it - what can we do and what can we create?" said Matheny.

Downtown business owners pay a special tax into the Business Improvement District fund that DGI operates.

Bill Heroy pays that tax.

He has owned a photography business on Elm Street for more than 30 years  and he says what DGI needs is not criticism, but direction.

"I think they've done a good job of keeping the streets clean and promoting things like First Friday and given the size of the towns the way the ownership is distributed among the properties, I am not sure what the city council would expect them to do beyond what they've already done," explained Heroy.

Our calls to DGI were not returned.

The sub-committee evaluating DGI will meet over the next three months before recommending a plan to council.

Bob Braswell resigned from the DGI board of directors earlier this week.

WFMY News 2

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